Ebron Among VTO Combine Standouts

CHARLOTTE, N.C. --- Over 160 recruits, primarily hailing from the Carolinas, competed in the fourth annual VTO Combine on Saturday. Highlighting the group were three of the nation's top tight ends – Eric Ebron, Eric MacLain, and Drew Owens – and an impressive group of quarterbacks that included Christian LeMay, Vad Lee, and Marquise Williams.

The combine included the 40-yard dash, 20-yard shuttle, and vertical jump, plus position and one-on-one drills. All combine events were conducted on Mallard Creek High School's field turf.

Eric Ebron
Greensboro (N.C.) Smith

Ebron shared the combine's Top Tight End Award with Eric McLain (Fayetteville (N.C.) Britt). He was among the most impressive looking participants and was nearly uncoverable during one-on-one drills.

"I was just running my routes," Ebron said. "I learned a couple new ones, actually. I'm going to try to bring that back to the school…

"I was just my plan old self. I was just doing what I do best – running my routes, catching the ball."

In combine events, Ebron clocked a 4.75-second 40-yard dash and a 32-inch vertical jump.

"I thought I was going to get in the 4.6 range [in the 40-yard dash]," Ebron said. "But I guess I still have to work on it a little bit more."

Less than a month ago, Ebron committed to UNC over scholarship offers from Alabama, Clemson, Duke, East Carolina, Maryland, Miami, NC State, Rutgers, Virginia, and West Virginia.

"I'm glad I did it," Ebron said. "Nothing has changed other than everybody calls me Mr. Carolina."

Shaun Underwood
Fuquay-Varina (N.C.)

Although he didn't take home the Top DL Award, Underwood had arguably the best all-around day. He was unstoppable during one-on-one drills, showing off his power and uncanny quickness. Underwood also ran a relatively impressive 40-yard dash. At 6-foot-1 and 323 pounds, he posted a 5.28-second time.

"I felt like I learned a lot of valuable stuff that I can use this year as far as pass rushing," Underwood said. "… I feel good about today, but I feel I could have done better."

Underwood achieved all his accomplishments with a pulled groin and a "messed up" knee.

"You have to keep going," Underwood said. "You can deal with pain later. There's ice, there's stretching you can do. You have to go as hard as you can right now."

Eight schools have offered Underwood, including Duke, UNC, Penn State, South Carolina, and Wake Forest. However, UNC and Wake Forest remain as his co-leaders.

Monte Golden
Jacksonville (N.C.) Northside

Golden took home the combine's Sleeper Award and fully deserved it. He came out of nowhere to impress during one-on-one linemen drills on both sides of the ball, although he primarily worked out as a defensive tackle.

"Whenever we did one-on-ones, I tried to be an athlete," Golden said. "I'm a team player, so I jumped on offense and defense, and got recognized on both sides.

"I think I have great footwork. So no matter how big [my opponent] is or how small he is, I always have that advantage with my footwork. But I also try to out-smart."

In combine events, Golden clocked a 5.56-second 40-yard dash and a 4.62-second 20-yard shuttle.

"I did well on my shuttle, but I've ran faster times – my fastest time is a 4.5," Golden said. "I need to fix my forty."

Golden is being recruited by all the in-state schools, as well as Central Florida, Georgia Tech, Kansas, Miami, Michigan, and UCLA. However, he is awaiting his first scholarship offer.

"I believe [my combine performance] is going to help a lot," Golden said. "… I got great coaching from people who have been where I want to go. I think if it doesn't help me get an offer from my actual performance, it will help me definitely get an offer during the season, because I'm going to take the techniques that they taught me and use it to the best of my ability during the season."

Justis Pickett
Charlotte (N.C.) Ardrey Kell

Pickett had the day's best performance in combine events, including the combine's best vertical jump (41 inches). The 5-foot-10, 173-pound athlete also finished in the top ten in the combine's other two events – 40-yard dash (4.56 seconds) and 20-yard shuttle (4.24 seconds).

Although he's being recruited as a tailback, wide receiver, and defensive back, Pickett worked out exclusively at tailback during the combine. Duke, East Carolina, South Carolina and Stanford have offered him.

Other notes: Vad Lee (QB, Durham (N.C.) Hillside) has made a lot of visits to UNC the past few months, including two times this past week alone. He plans to return to Chapel Hill for the spring game, and also make visits to Duke, Georgia Tech, Maryland NC State within the next couple of weeks… Samquan Evans (DT, Winston-Salem (N.C.) Carver) and Marquise Williams (QB, Charlotte (N.C.) Mallard Creek) also plan on attending UNC's spring game. Williams shared the Top QB Award with Christian LeMay (QB, Matthews (N.C.) Butler)… Speaking of LeMay, he dispelled rumors that UNC had sneaked back into his top ten list. But he said UNC is still recruiting him… UNC Commitment T.J. Thorpe (WR, Durham (N.C.) Jordan) and 2012 standout D.J. Humphries (OT, Charlotte (N.C.) Mallard Creek) were in attendance, but didn't participate due to minor injuries… Another 2012 standout, Jody Fuller, says he was recently verbally offered by South Carolina. He's also receiving interest from Duke, Florida, and Maryland… Trevon Pendelton (LB, Portsmouth (Ohio) West) earned the nickname "Lockdown" by the tight end group, because during one-on-ones he shut down almost every tight end he faced including Ebron, MacLain, and Drew Owens. Pendelton, who visited NC State on Saturday, took home the Top LB Award… Devin Flowers (OL, Charlotte (N.C.) Mallard Creek) had an up-and-down day, but took home the Top OL Award. He has trips planned to Clemson, East Carolina, and Georgia Tech next week… Other position awards given out included: RB Jalen Simmons (Charlotte (N.C.) West), WR Germone Hopper (Charlotte (N.C.) Berry) and Neil Chambers (Shelby (N.C.) Crest), DL Logan Daughtry (Fort Mill (S.C.) Nation Ford), and DB Tyler Threatt (Mooresville (N.C.)).

Full Results of Players of Note

Participant Pos High School Class Ht Wt Fty Sh VJ
A.J. Artis WR Eden (N.C.) Morehead 2011 6-1 179 4.84 4.63 29.0
Demari Boswell CB Greensboro (N.C.) Smith 2011 5-9 161 4.47 4.72 35.0
Trey Booker RB Lenoir (N.C.) Hibriten 2011 5-8 157 4.78 4.09 37.0
Roderick Byers DL Rock Hill (S.C.) Northwestern 2011 6-3 262 DNP DNP 28.0
Austin Chambers WR Waynesville (N.C.) Tuscola 2011 5-7 151 4.78 4.35 40.0
Cody Dumaine RB Morganton (N.C.) Freedom 2011 5-9 196 4.47 4.75 33.0
Jela Duncan RB Charlotte (N.C.) Mallard Creek 2012 5-9 180 4.78 4.13 37.0
Eric Ebron TE Greensboro (N.C.) Smith 2011 6-5 216 4.75 DNP 32.0
Jahwan Edwards RB Matthews (N.C.) Butler 2011 5-10 244 4.94 4.35 30.0
Samquan Evans DT Winston-Salem (N.C.) Carver 2011 6-0 279 5.53 5.33 24.0
Devin Flowers OL Charlotte (N.C.) Mallard Creek 2011 6-3 287 5.59 5.23 28.0
Jody Fuller WR Monroe (N.C.) Sun Valley 2012 6-0 197 DNP DNP 35.0
Monte Golden DL Jacksonville (N.C.) Northside 2011 6-2 291 5.56 4.62 25.0
Mo Gore WR Boone (N.C.) Watauga 2011 5-11 159 4.47 4.25 35.0
D.J. Humphries OL Charlotte (N.C.) Mallard Creek 2012 6-5 261 DNP DNP DNP
Vad Lee QB Durham (N.C.) Hillside 2011 DNP DNP 4.78 4.44 32.0
Chrisian LeMay QB Matthews (N.C.) Butler 2011 6-2 188 DNP DNP DNP
Uriah LeMay WR Matthews (N.C.) Butler 2013 6-1 188 4.94 DNP 27.0
Eric MacLain TE Fayetteville (N.C.) Britt 2011 6-5 246 5.20 DNP 27.0
Pat Martin S Greenville (S.C.) Mann 2011 6-0 207 4.60 4.22 29.0
Doug Middleton CB Winston-Salem (N.C.) Parkland 2011 6-0 173 4.62 4.47 DNP
Drew Owens TE Charlotte (N.C.) Ardrey Kell 2011 6-6 227 5.00 DNP 31.0
Colin Parsons DL Matthews (N.C.) Butler 2011 6-4 221 DNP 4.82 28.0
Kaylen Pearson RB Lenoir (N.C.) Hibriten 2011 5-11 180 4.82 4.10 28.0
Trevon Pendleton LB Portsmouth (Ohio) West 2011 5-11 225 4.75 4.10 31.0
Tyler Philpott OL Columbus (N.C.) Polk Co. 2011 6-3 282 5.84 5.24 24.0
Justis Pickett RB Charlotte (N.C.) Ardrey Kell 2011 5-10 173 4.56 4.24 41.0
Brandon Pittman LB Raleigh (N.C.) Leesville Road 2011 6-2 198 4.72 4.56 32.0
Jeremy Reynolds WR Greensboro (N.C.) Dudley 2011 5-9 165 DNP 4.53 33.0
Denzel Rice WR Winston-Salem (N.C.) Carver 2011 6-0 176 4.66 4.22 34.0
Jalen Simmons RB Charlotte (N.C.) West 2011 5-8 194 4.75 4.51 DNP
Terrell Stanley DL Southport (N.C.) South Brunswick 2011 6-1 261 5.56 5.33 28.0
T.J. Thorpe WR Durham (N.C.) Jordan 2011 6-0 180 DNP DNP DNP
Shaun Underwood DL Fuquay-Varina (N.C.) 2011 6-1 323 5.28 DNP 28.0
Deion Walker RB Matthews (N.C.) Butler 2011 5-11 183 4.63 4.22 34.0
Marquise Williams QB Charlotte (N.C.) Mallard Creek 2011 6-3 215 DNP DNP DNP

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